Argued: May 10, 2018
from the United States District Court for the District of
Maryland, at Greenbelt. George Jarrod Hazel, District Judge.
Beth Silver, OFFICE OF THE FEDERAL PUBLIC DEFENDER,
Greenbelt, Maryland, for Appellant.
William Eyler, OFFICE OF THE UNITED STATES ATTORNEY,
Greenbelt, Maryland, for Appellee.
Wyda, Federal Public Defender, OFFICE OF THE FEDERAL PUBLIC
DEFENDER, Baltimore, Maryland, for Appellant.
Charles J. Biro, UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE,
Washington, D.C.; Stephen M. Schenning, Acting United States
Attorney, Baltimore, Maryland, Bryan E. Foreman, Assistant
United States Attorney, OFFICE OF THE UNITED STATES ATTORNEY,
TRAXLER and DIAZ, Circuit Judges, and Richard M. GERGEL,
United States District Judge for the District of South
Carolina, sitting by designation.
TRAXLER, CIRCUIT JUDGE
pleaded guilty pursuant to a plea agreement to conspiracy to
commit access-device fraud, see 18 U.S.C. §
1029(b)(2), and aggravated identity theft, see 18
U.S.C. § 1028A. The district court imposed a total
sentence of 49 months. Appellant appeals, arguing that the
district court erred by allowing the government to decline to
seek a substantial-assistance sentence reduction without
following the procedure set out in the plea agreement.
Finding no error, we affirm.
plea agreement executed by the parties consists of two parts
- the standard plea agreement used by the United States
Attorney's office in the Southern Division of the
District of Maryland, and a sealed supplement containing
terms specific to Appellant's case.
19 of the standard-term portion of the plea agreement is
entitled "Obstruction or Other Violations of Law,"
and provides as follows:
The Defendant agrees that he will not commit any offense in
violation of federal, state or local law between the date of
this agreement and his sentencing in this case. In the event
that the Defendant (i) engages in conduct after the date of
this agreement which would justify a finding of obstruction
of justice under U.S.S.G. § 3C.1, or (ii) fails to
accept personal responsibility for his conduct by failing to
acknowledge his guilt to the probation officer who prepares
the Presentence Report, or (iii) commits any offense in
violation of federal, state, or local law, then this Office
will be relieved of its obligations to the Defendant as
reflected in this agreement. Specifically, this Office will
be free to argue sentencing guideline factors other than
those stipulated in this agreement, and it will also be free
to make sentencing recommendations other than those set out
in this agreement. As with any alleged breach of this
agreement, this Office will bear the burden of convincing the
Court of the Defendant's obstructive or unlawful ...